The role of the Economic Development Department is to facilitate the planned orderly growth of the community that will ultimately expand the city’s tax base and improve the overall quality of life for Bella Vista residents. Staff are ready to assist developers, builders, entrepreneurs, retailers and restaurateurs who are interested in doing business in the City of Bella Vista.
The strong residential buying power, outstanding regional assets and amenities, diverse demographics and overall high quality of life satisfaction ratings make Bella Vista a very attractive place to do business.
The northwest Arkansas population has doubled since 1990. National publications routinely rank NWA among the best places to live and do business in the U.S. (click here for specific recognitions) and Bella Vista is a major component of the NWA economy and lifestyle. Bella Vista is at the top of the Northwest Arkansas region, both figuratively and geographically.
- Bella Vista’s population grew by 71% between the 2000 and the 2010 U.S. Census, compared to the overall state’s growth rate of 9%.
- The 2010 U.S. Census listed the population of Bella Vista at 26,461. The Northwest Arkansas Regional Planning Commission projects thepopulation in Bella Vista will be 33,633 in 2020 and 42,085 by 2030. (See chart for more.)
- The average household income is $75,806, which is 29% higher than the state average of $58,058.
- Per capita income is $32,632, which is 39% higher than the state average of $23,401.
- 44% of Bella Vista residents over the age of 25 have an educational background consisting of an associate degree or higher.
- The rental vacancy rate frequently reaches 0%.
- The home ownership rate in Bella Vista is 88% and the renter occupied rate is 12%.
- Benton County homes have the highest average sale price of all counties in Arkansas.
- There are approximately 23,000 vacant home lots available in the city to build upon.
- Traffic counts along the U.S. 71 corridor exceed 40,000 vehicles per day. For a detailed analysis of the AHDT traffic counts, click here.
Current sales tax rates on merchandise sold inside the city limits of Bella Vista:
- Bella Vista – 1%
- Benton County – 1%
- State of Arkansas – 6.5%
- Total – 8.5%
- There is an additional 1% sales tax on prepared food items (restaurants) and an additional 2% sales tax on lodging stays and meeting rooms. This tax is collected by the Bella Vista Advertising and Promotion Commission and funds are used specifically to promote Bella Vista for tourism purposes, highlighting local restuarants and lodging opportunities. For more information about the Bella Vista Advertising and Promotion Commission, visit Discover Bella Vista.
Potential for Commercial Growth
In a 2018 study performed by the consulting firm Gould Evans regarding the state of Bella Vista’s retail economy, based on the population of the current residents, it is estimated that Bella Vista has a retail market of approximately $137 million dollars annually. However, roughly $129 million of this market is lost to surrounding communities outside the city of Bella Vista. Thus, there is enormous potential for retail and restaurant growth for this market.
Bella Vista will complete around 50 additional miles of soft trails to be used for hiking and mountain biking in 2020. This is in addition to the previous 40 miles (The Back 40 Trails) that was completed in 2016. Together this trail system will present an immense economic opportunity for the city in the way of tourism, as well as attracting new residents and regional consumers.
Doing Business in Bella Vista
If your business serves food or provides lodging (30 days or less) then you will need to collect and remit to the Commission the appropriate taxes on behalf of the city’s Advertising & Promotion Commission.
Travis W. Stephens
Economic Development Manager
Bella Vista City Hall
101 Town Center | PO Box 5655Bella Vista, AR 72714